The Upstate SC

VOL12ISS2 2016

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Page 61 of 83

THE ORIGINAL RELOCATION GUIDE — UPSTATE SC | VOLUME 12 — ISSUE 2 60 UPSTATE REAL ESTATE 2016 has continued the growth shown in previously in both 2016 and 2015. Given the current economic forecast, this ongoing trend looks to continue through this year, and well into 2017 in the Upstate. As in the past the I-385 and I-85 corridor remains a hot spot for growth with retail and industrial, which in turn drives additional new office demand as well as residential growth. Being located in the major growth corridor between Atlanta and Charlotte, the Upstate has attracted major industry players like Michelin, Fluor, BMW and GE. Favorable interest rates and low cap rates combined with demand should provide new developers and landlords opportunities throughout the area in 2017. This, along with positive press highlighting the vibrant and growing business environment, exceptional quality of life and low cost of living, should cause tenants to continue to be attracted to the region. Greenville boasts one of the top housing markets in the nation and is consistently receiving recognition as one of the best places in America to live, work, and play because of its moderate climate, cost of living, and creature comforts found in cities twice and three times its size. For 2016 Greenville once again was included in's Top 100 Best Places to Live. As many 'in the know' will attest to, the website agrees that the secret of Greenville's success is simple: balance. Balance between the old and the new, between growth and quality of life, and between economic vibrancy and day-to-day livability, makes Greenville definitely an energetic city! It has much working in its favor — from an enviable location in the booming Charlotte-Atlanta corridor to a welcoming cultural mix of urban sophistication and traditional Southern charm, a talented young workforce, and an extremely diversified economy. The city still boasts affordable housing options in a mix of bungalows, classic Tudors, Charleston-style homes, townhomes and more located within traditional neighborhoods, historic districts, and suburban areas. As an increased demand for urban living has been seen in recent years, Greenville has also seen a boom of new housing development in the downtown area where buyers and renters can find single-family homes, townhouses, lofts and condominiums. Of course in drawing prospective residents downtown, it doesn't hurt to have amazing museums and other cultural opportunities, a very active restaurant scene, walking and biking trails, music of all kinds, and award-winning parks and green space. For those seeking to live in downtown, the condo market offers some very interesting urban living choices. Many of the condos are in the heart of downtown Greenville while several of the single family communities like North Main, Alta Vista, Augusta Road, East Park Historic, Hampton Pinckney, and Cleveland Forest are within a reasonable walking or biking distance. If you're still not sold on Greenville, consider that it offers a highly ranked consolidated public school system that includes both city and county students enriched by a number of area colleges and universities such as Furman University and Clemson University's four-year school of medicine. According to the Greenville Area Development Corporation (GADC), Greenville's annual cost of living is now about 93.5 percent of the national average. The median price of a home that is currently selling in 2016 is $174,000. Per square foot costs averaged out at about $106. Spartanburg, the second largest city in this Upstate MSA, is a medium-sized city located east of Greenville. With a population of around 38,000 people and 35 neighborhoods, Spartanburg ranks as the 11th largest community in South Carolina. Unlike some cities where white-collar or blue-collar occupations dominate the local economy, Spartanburg is predominately neither — instead a workforce made up of both white- and blue-collar jobs. Spartanburg has many of the same attributes that makes its neighbor, Greenville, great: career opportunities, great public and private schools, a vibrant downtown as well as easy access to the beauty in the surrounding Blue Ridge Mountain foothills. Spartanburg is the prosperous business and commercial center of the old metro area triad Greenville-Spartanburg-Anderson. In years past it was mainly a textile milling and agriculture center; however the economy has made the turn to bring in more new-economy businesses, as well as strengthen the old ones. Spartanburg is still a major center for agriculture processing and shipping, mostly peaches and other orchard fruit. Though most of the textile mills are gone, it still remains the headquarters of textile leader Milliken, which also operates a research facility in the city. The addition of the giant BMW plant in nearby Greer brought a lot of smaller businesses supporting that operation. Spartanburg offers a business-friendly environment with skilled low-cost labor and a very low cost of living profile (12.9% below the national average). The median selling price of homes in Spartanburg is still well below the national median. The average home sold earlier this year for average $123,000 with per square foot costs dropping to around $74. Like many of its Upstate partners, Spartanburg homes include traditional ranches, conventional two-stories, Colonials and Craftsman styles as well as new upscale condos now available downtown, within walking distance of restaurants, boutiques and Morgan Square. According to the Spartanburg Association of Realtors the latest numbers show a mixed bag of real estate news for the Upstate city. Demand is certainly

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